This enquiry is a study of the impediments to “Access to Justice” for Australians who are suffering significant economic and other disadvantage, for example,
- persons with disabilities,
- the elderly,
- Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people,
- economically disadvantaged and impoverished Australians,
- homeless people,
- and several other classes of people who are objectively disadvantaged.
The Steering Committee for the Project was a group of eminent lawyers, judges and legal academics chaired by the former High Court Chief Justice Robert French.
The project received submissions from a number of people and organisations. The intention is to produce a report which makes the case for better strategies concerning access to justice and law reform, with appropriate funding provisions.
The final report has not yet been released but submissions are now closed.
Lawyers are awaiting the outcome of the Enquiry as it may well provide a blueprint for major reform of the legal system in Australia to create a better pathway for access to justice.
In that regard I am chairing the Organising Committee for the biennial Access to Justice Conference which will take place in Canberra in March 2019. That Conference will focus on the work of the Justice Project and will involve presentations from a number of lawyers and other professionals.
I will try to keep you informed of developments as the Conference approaches.